• Crusader Kings III Available Now!

    The realm rejoices as Paradox Interactive announces the launch of Crusader Kings III, the latest entry in the publisher’s grand strategy role-playing game franchise. Advisors may now jockey for positions of influence and adversaries should save their schemes for another day, because on this day Crusader Kings III can be purchased on Steam, the Paradox Store, and other major online retailers.


    Real Strategy Requires Cunning

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First Lieutenant
Feb 1, 2004
244
0
History of Carcassonne

Carcassonne was a strategically important city near the Pyrenees in southern France. The Romans conquered the city in 122 B.C. and controlled it until the Visigoths conquered it in 436 A.D. The Visigoths controlled most of Southern France but in 508 A.D. Clovis launched an attack that took Toulouse but failed in taking Carcassone. It changed hands twice until the Arabs conquered it in 725. Pepin the Short kicked them out of France in 759 and took control of the city once and for all. Raymond-Bernard Trencavel became Viscount of Carcassonne by his marriage to Ermengarde who was the sister of the last count.

The Walled City

"I should be a duke in my own right," Raymond-Bernard proclaimed suddenly.

His startled newly appointed steward, Rangearde Gaden, asked,"But the Duke of Toulouse is your liege my lord and the only way to become the duke yourself is to take his lands."

"No I do not mean I should be the Duke of Toulouse but I should be a duke myself." The count walked over to a painting of his father, "I make more money than Toulouse and most of these other dukes. I control the most land in Languedoc and therefore I should be the Duke of Languedoc."

The steward had calmed down slightly but was annoyed that a man with all his power could want more, "My lord you would need either Narbonne or Viviers to support you before you could proclaim that and Narbonne is happy as they are and Viviers is German and does not want a Frenchman as it's ruler."

Raymond sat himself down pondering his position. Everything Rangearde said was true. These had been some rough years ever since he inherited his title. Wait, he thought suddenly, my wife is 15 and we are childless. When we do have a son, God willing, he will need a wife and maybe one of these counties will have an eligible daughter. If I can't have a dukedom then maybe my heir will. His steward noticed him stroking his clean shaven chin. Everytime he did this he was deep in thought planning something. Rangearde couldn't resist the temptation, "Lord, what are you thinking if you will allow me to know?"

"My good steward can you tell me how I became ruler of this county?"

The puzzled steward answered, "Through your wife. Her brother had no children and you became his..." It all made perfect sense now.

The count realized she now fully understood, "Very good dear steward when I have a son he will need a wife. I might be able to get him named the heir of one of these neighboring counties. Then everything will be all legal and most likely recognized by the King."

"How do you know the king will recognize this," his wife suddenly said entering the room. She always did have a way of sneaking up on him. Perhaps she could be useful in this way?

"My dear I do not which is why we would need to ask the King for his blessing. I am sure he will understand that it is our right to be the Dukedom of Languedoc and not some minor French county. Not to mention, as my steward knows, we are one of his richest vassals and I don't think he would care to lose us. Now to state matters steward. When we have the money you begin the construction of a fishing wharf and since we have no major vassals, save minor barons and such, to be angered at us make sure we institute a feudal system understood? Oh, and I would like my wife to be our spy master"

"Yes my lord."

His surprised wife suddenly remembered why she was there in the first place, "Raymond I have good news for you. The reason I came here was to tell you that I'm pregnant and the midwives have confirmed it."

Raymond jumped out of his seat and rushed over to embrace his wife"Servants! Fetch us some wine so that we may celebrate my wife's pregnancy." Raymond went back to his lavish chair. He was going to have a child. Hopefully it will be a boy he prayed. Hopefully this would be the boy that would someday be a duke and not a count like his father. For now he had to make sure the county was in proper order. The nobles should obviously be favored in all decisions. What of the military he wondered? If Carcassonnes ascension to a dukedom was contested he would have to have a proper army to defend it. Raymond knew he needed a good marshall to train and develope his armies. No matter what thought he could rest peacefully tonight. Today the County of Carcassonne and tommorrow the Dukedom of Languedoc. He was going to make sure he left a grand inheritance for his heirs.



Normal/Normal 1.04
Goals:Become Duke of Languedoc and find my own Kingdom
I've actually played this game throught to 1178. I would start over but I don't think a new game would be as unique as this one has been. I wrote some of the important things down and have all the save games so it won't matter. I'll put up some screenshots with the next update. Also I'll try not to give up anything important that happens but this has been a unique game.

If your curious about why I spelled Raymonds name Trencavel in the brief history part but I spelled it Treancavel everywhere else it's not a typo. When I looked for a history of Carcassone I found two sites. One was in French and another was written by a Frenchman in english from the area and they both had his name spelled that way. I use Treancavel in the story so I don't confuse myself since that is how it is in the game.
 

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First Lieutenant
Feb 1, 2004
244
0
I'm more of a weekend writer so I'm warning you all right now I probably won't update until then.

Carcassonne is a very good place to start as a count... Which king title will you go for?
I would prefer to be King of France. However if things get to hectic down in Iberia I might have to step in. Then there's always England and a possible unification between them and France. Yet I could always launch a crusade and become king of Jerusalem of Egypt.

I honestly never knew this was an easier place to start as a count. I'm interested in the history of the area and that's why I chose it.

Ooh, nice setup. Always had a soft spot for the "rise to power" story, especially from such humble beginnings. Here's to hoping you get your kingdom!
Thanks I'm going to need that. This is my third real game and the first game where I actually understand the rules.
 

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Second Lieutenant
Dec 8, 2004
172
0
Nice introduction. I will be looking into this one. Hope you get your duchy soon.
 

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First Lieutenant
Feb 1, 2004
244
0
Sept. 17, 1067

"I've never been this nervous in my life."

Raymond-Bernard had every right to be nervous. His wife had gone into labor. So many questions were in his mind. Would it be a boy or girl, would his wife survive and if worse came to worse would the child die too?

"My lord the midwives are doing everything they can, it is not in our hands anymore," his steward did her best to reassure him.

"Yes you are correct, please stay with me though, I feel as if I need some company here."

"Of course lord."

About five minutes later a woman walked up to the count and his steward. The smile on the woman's face reassured him, he just knew everything was fine.

"My lord you have a son."

Raymond visibly deflated. Everything was going to be fine.

"I thank you for this news, but what of my wife?"

Still smiling the woman said, "She is fine as well and requests your presence."

The count went into the building his wife was in. He saw her in bed holding their newborn son. He was at a lose for words. What could he say to his wife? He was just so happy and relieved that nothing bad had happened. Eventually his wife broke the silence.

"Well, are you going to just stand there staring or are you going to meet your heir?"

"I'm so glad you're fine, if something would have happened..."

"Well nothing did, now are you even going to hold your son. Not to mention we need to name him. Personally I think he is a spitting image of you, perhaps Raymond Jr.?"

Raymond walked over to his wife and picked up his newborn. He stared right into the childs eyes.

"Hello there. I think you are an Andronic."

"My dear I like the name but is there any reason?"

"No I've just always liked the name and I think it will suit him well."


Screenshots are going to have to be next time. I was at a christmas party that lasted longer than expected and I didn't feel like really doing anything with the game when I got back.
 

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First Lieutenant
Feb 1, 2004
244
0
In the remainder of 1067 there was not much that happened. The only major event was that Ermengarde became pregnant with Raymond's second child. Everyone was surprised considering this was just several months after the birth of his heir. People were glad they were happy together but were also wondering if they were going to keep this up. Raymond was hoping that it would be a son just in case anything would happen to Andronic. Every ruler needed a spare just in case after all.

February was the first major diplomatic move by the county. Narbonne agreed to an alliance. Raymond hoped that this would make them more agreeable to marriages in the future. In May things did not go as well. The seed the peasants in Carcassone sowed were not as productive[poor seed selection]. As a result the crops were not as numerous and the quality was lower. By June however the count had enough money to build a fishing wharf. The crops proved that the county need other sources of income and food so the county looked toward the sea.

Things brightened for the count in August when his daughter Procla was born. Then in December Carcassone recovered from with an increase in land productivity. All in all the year was good and productive for the County of Carcassone.

1069 would be an uneventful year for the most part. The most important thing that happened was the announcement that Ermengarde was once again pregnant. However things went badly for the steward. Rangearde became stressed with the financial situation in the county. It became to much for her to handle. Even with this she was still pleased with the completion of the fishing wharf in August.

The coming year was more eventful. At the end of January Raymond had his second daughter, Bona. Raymond was disappointed once again that it was not a second son but he Bona was still his child and he loved her. The court thought differently of this. What if something happened to Andronic? The Treancavels would have no one else to succeed except for his daughters. In April there was over one hundred gold in the treasury and the count gave his steward permission to build a forestry in Montpelier with the fishing wharf.

In June Raymond meet with some spies to discuss the children of his neighbors. His son wasn't even three but Raymond insisted that he be made aware of potential brides for his heir. The only neighbor in the Languedoc region that had children was the count of Viviers. He had a son and daughter. His daughter was Andronic's junior by one year. If Viviers did not have anymore sons Raymond knew it was quite possible that the heir could have an accident. He demanded to be made aware of when this girl came of age.

The second half of the year was both good and bad. In August theives had set up a guild in Montpelier and the people were demanding justice. The provinces problems were temporarily forgotten when Raymond's wife was once again pregnant in September. However this did not stop the plotting of the County's nobles.

Baron Phillippe: The count's steward is unable to do her job properly, theives are overruning Montpelier and the count has only one son, Pierre it is time to act.

Baron Pierre: The count has worked hard to help this county and has the loyalty of the church, burghers and the loyalty of the majority of peasants and nobles. You can't expect to get away with a revolt.

Baron Phillippe: If I can handle these theiving riff raff the people will trust me and then I think I can get more nobles and peasants to support me.

Baron Pierre: But the Count already has plans on building a court to try them in. You won't be able to deal with them.

Baron Phillippe: Oh how wrong you are. You see I have Raymond's trust and I get the feeling ha ha(the baron winks) he will appoint me judge. If I play it right the people will think I am the main person behind this.

Baron Pierre: If you can do that Phillippe then I will support you and I'll encourage support for you from the other nobles.




I'm going to start writing more of a story. I'm not getting anywhere covering this with pure dialogue. As you can see though I will put some dialogue in. I plan to use more than this but for now it will work. I'm just trying to get back into writing.

I had to get rid of a lot of info in the picture so that you all won't know where I am so far. I should have started this when I started the game. Yes Ermengarde dies eventually as you can tell from the picture but I'm not going to say anymore until we get to that.
 

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First Lieutenant
Feb 1, 2004
244
0
The beginning of 1071 was boring for Raymond-Bernard and for France. The nobles were busy plotting against their rulers and that was it. There was occasional fighting in Iberia that had the French nobles on their toes. What if the Spanish kingdoms were to lose? Would they be next? Naturally, Raymond was more worried than most of the other nobles. Carcassone was big and rich. Her count made more money than most of the other counts and even a few dukes. If the muslims chose to attack, Carcassone would probably be their target.
In February the military men of the county had discovered the uses of leather as a means of protection. When this information reached Raymond he was much relaxed. He decided to reward the soldiers that had discovered this with a visit to his fort. When they arrived they were astounded at the size of the wooden fort the count lived in. At this time in history stone was to costly for most including Raymond and therefore it was usually only kings that could afford it. Raymond's fort however, was more decorative and bigger than most because Carcassone's income allowed him to have such a residence. After dinner Raymond, with his wife and advisors, discussed the county's military matters with them. Their leader, Bernard Sorel, was made a captain and his companions lieutenants. They discussed the preparations they needed in case of a Muslim attack. Bernard told Raymond that since he was loved by the peasants more than anyone else the majority of any force he could raise would be peasants. Raymond realized that things needed to be done to better equip any peasants in his army if they were to win battles. The count also realized that he could not win battles with peasants alone and measures had to be taken to raise the loyalty of the other classes.
In June the count's problems were halted, at least temporarily. His wife had given birth to a son which the couple named Teodor. Teodor was a strong and healthy baby and Raymond had big hopes for him in the future. Sometimes though his wife worried that he may view his son as just another soldier to fight the Muslims. After being made aware of this Raymond started spending more time with his son, visiting him as much as he could in the nusery.
At the year's closing he meet with his advisors to discuss the economic and diplomatic situation of Carcassone. In April a forestry had been built in Montpelier. The people there had discovered that they could make a business out of the selling of wood. Ermengarde had a law passed taxing this trade of course which earned the county even greater profits. Ermengarde also mentioned that the peasants had started using a new technique to farm. They called it the two field system. Raymond could care less about what it involved all he was concerned with was that this brought in an even better produce.

The next year was another boring year. The clergy began practicing clerical celibacy in Montpelier. Raymond found this hard to understand but as long as it was confined to the clergy it did not bother him or his family. In April the first step to fighting crime in the county began with the building of a court of justice in Montpelier. The count had big hopes for this project. He cared for his people and hated hearing the reports of their suffering to theives. He felt that maybe with a separate wing prosecuting these vermin more criminals would finally be caught.

In January the servants of Raymond had noticed that a number of people had reported their pets missing only to find the carcass' of the beasts several days later. The caretakers of Andronic were horried when they stumbled in on him torturing a rabbit he had caught out in the woods that morning. When news of this reached Raymond he talked to his son. Andronic was informed that he would begin his education in the court to learn how to properly rule. Raymond hoped that this behavior was just a cry for attention and it would end eventually. The torturings didn't stop. Andronic kept on and even started taking his anger out on people. His mother tried to control him but he was to much. On the same date that the court of justice in Montpellier was finished Ermengarde admitted to her husband she had become very worried and wanted to get away for awhile to relax. Raymond was worried about his wife and for the next few months tried to comfort her. It was all in vain. The stresses of the county's finances and parenthood were to much for her. She began to sulk and became less and less social. Raymond tried to alleviate his wife's suffering but he couldn't. Ermengarde felt to hopeless. Raymond gave up and gave her the order to begin a forestry in Carcassone in March of 1074 when they would have the funds.

For most of 1074 Raymond had worried that the public would notice a change in Ermengarde, and indeed they had until January of 1075 when the couple happily made the public announcement that they would be having another child. The public celebrated this news more than normal because they had feared their countess was terribly ill. Even Raymond was happier than normal believing that his wife would finally get over her sadness. In march several merchants came to the county from Toulouse and set up merchant houses. The same month the forestry in Carcassone was complete and more funds flowed into the treasury. Bona was sent to a monastery to begin her education among the clerics. In August the court of justice had succeeded in wiping out the theives guild that had established itself. The main figure in this was a baron named Pierre. Raymond had met this man a few times and wasn't too fond of him. He decided to order his wife and spymaster to watch this shady character. In October Bona finally developed an interest in religion at the monastery and Andronic followed in her footsteps but became selfish in the process. Three days after Andronic's change of heart Ermengarde gave birth to a daughter named Josepa and one month later she was with child again.

1076 was a year of both happiness and despair. Procla showed great mathematical skills even at her young age and it was decided she would go to court to learn the workings of a steward. May was when the tragedy struck. Rangearde developed a cough and came down with an illness. She had been a very successful steward and was close to the family. Raymond got the best doctors he could get to look after her. Even with her sickness she was still beside Raymond when his wife went into labour. However this did not save the countess herself. Some said it was the pressure of everything finally getting to her, but regardless she died in labour with the child. Raymond couldn't believe the news at first. He went in to check on his wife and tried to act like everything was normal, but he had to accept reality. His wife was dead. He retired to his study and worked for the whole night. Before shutting himself off he ordered that a woman named Modela be made the new spymaster. In November the death of his steward Rangearde hit Raymond hard. In a period of three months he had lost two people very close to him and was in deep mourning.
Still his chancellor convinced him to remarry. So it was on December 1st that he married a woman named Isabella who was the second daughter of the Duke of Bourgogne. The wedding was lavish considering the county made more than Bourgogne. The count decided that since he badly needed to recover he would spare no expense. In the great hall of his fort the priest pronounced the couple married. The feasting and celebrating really relaxed and calmed Raymond down. He knew he'd never forget his first wife but at least Isabelle could make him feel could again. 13 days later Andronic brought to court a popular merchant he had befriended. While this man was no better than Raymond and monetary matters he decided to please his heir and allowed the main to stay and teach Andronic what he knew.



I know ive been away for awhile but it was for health reasons. I've been having these headaches that are precursors to migraines but I'm on meds now. So I plan on staying with this. I wish I could have made this update better but at least it's something.
 

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Not well earned at all.
Nov 11, 2004
245
0
I like it. I have yet to get CK, and your AAR is very informative and helps me to understand how the game works.
 

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First Lieutenant
Feb 1, 2004
244
0
Thanks HoldFast. CK is a good game and I'm glad this helps you understand how it works.

I have part of an update but I'm sick so I don't really feel like finishing it even if I could think of something to write.
 

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First Lieutenant
Feb 1, 2004
244
0
Well looks like this is gonna have to come to an end. My computer crashed and lost all my files. However I'm going to start over with this. I might actually update my new one more often since I won't have to try to remember what happened several months ago. This weekend I'm going to put CK back on and start over.